According to the official narrative in Minsk, Belarus–China relations have been one long success story of fast-rising trade figures and ever larger Chinese investments. Among independent analysts, however, there is unease over the relationship. Critics worry that Belarus is sacrificing precious state funds on costly joint projects with little to show for it. Three recent articles – when taken together – explain the nature of Belarus–China relations and rectify the disparities between the conflicting official and independent narratives.
The three articles make two things clear about Belarus–China relations: (1) the regime’s drive to bring in Chinese investment has committed it to a highrisk strategy; (2) if cooperation continues to deepen, there will be political and economic implications for China, the EU, Belarus and the surrounding region.